A coronavirus vaccine certificate, dubbed “Vaxproof,” is in the works at the headquarters of the European Commission in hopes that international travel might be restored more easily.
A report today from Reuters states that European Union officials have admitted that the plan is dividing the nations that are members of the Union.
A vaccine certificate has been under discussion for months, according to the report, but no compromise has been reached so far because of fears over vaccine skepticism as well as concerns over medical privacy.
The Executive Commission is indeed working on a new system which can be used by all 27 nations of the EU countries. This would purportedly take the form of a certificate proving that the holder has been vaccinated against the coronavirus and therefore would not need to be tested once he or she has reached another country.
Announcement to come next week on coordination of coronavirus strategies
The two EU officials who spoke with Reuters also stated that the Commission will make an announcement regarding recommendations on how best to strengthen coordination in the fight against the coronavirus. However, it is unclear at present if any exact details on the “Vaxproof” certificate will be part of that communication.
A spokeswoman for the EU Commission told reporters at a news conference on Friday that such discussions are still ongoing but that it was vital that there be some kind of mutually-accepted documentation on vaccination.
The privacy concerns arise over the fact that, even if an entirely new database of personal medical information is not created, there will of necessity be some sharing of personal information in order for the system to work.
Tourism-dependent countries heavily in favor of certificate
A videoconference of EU leaders will take place next Thursday, January 21, at which leaders are expected to take up the pressing issue.
Countries in which tourism is a large part of the economy, including Greece and Malta, have been openly supportive of the idea of creating some type of vaccination verification before people are allowed to travel freely once again.
Holland, however, is one country which may take exception to that thinking, with one Dutch diplomat saying “No outright dismissal, but our parliament does fear the certificates may end up being used to determine whether people can travel.”
The issue of invasion of privacy is also rearing its head, according to the same official, who said that his country was concerned about these risks. The nation of Croatia as well has called for much more discussion regarding medical privacy before taking any decisions on the matter, according to another official.
Reuters reported the Dutch diplomat as saying any vaccination certificate was tantamount to obligating citizens to be inoculated.
Vaccine skepticism is an issue all around the world, and any compulsory inoculation campaigns could lead to those who are already skeptical of the shot to become even more negative regarding vaccination.